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May 29, 2012

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In Germany we have http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volkstrauertag>Volkstrauertag but I'd bet that a majority of the population is unaware of it and does not know the date even if they have heard of it. The protestant churches have http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Totensonntag>Totensonntag one week after that.
I actually like it that the population has essentially dropped any observation of that old cult of the (war) dead since there was always at least a hint of "They will be avenged" and often far more than that.

Is it just me or is there something particularly cruel about this sort of thing? (warning: video link with commercial beforehand)

Sure it makes for good TV, but if I had been away from my kids for 6 months, producing some propaganda (but the feel good kind!) for Major League Baseball would not be first on my agenda.

I spent 27 years as a physician in the Army. In that time, I cared for soldiers who died as a result of horrendous wounds that are unimaginable in a civilian setting. I also worked with soldiers who had been wounded but continued to serve despite missing limbs and other organs. The one who haunts me the most is the young man who lost both legs (at the pelvis) most of his hands, some vision, some hearing, part of his intestine, and other lesser injuries. Lew somehow lived and went to school and earned a law degree. He provided invaluable assistance to me in my job at the Pentagon. In the early 1990s, his pain, depression, and addictions led to his suicide. I mess him and the others too much to express.

Thank you for your service, Dr. Haines.

It seems to me that a lot of the conversation on Memorial Day is not about remembering the people who died while in military service at time of war, but of giving thanks to those currently living and in one of the services. Mission shift?

I've posted Memorial Day and Remembrance Day - with less precision and enthusiam as time wears on. My father and uncles were veterans...who advised I not enter military service except as a response to invasion and 'for the duration of the emergency' when I had 3 years of cadet training.
U.S. law supports that idea...in theory.
Doug's Darkworld and Vagabond Scholar both have articles worth noting.
http://opitslinkfest.blogspot.com/2012/05/29-may-dougs-darkworld.html
A picture is worth a thousand words
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-0jMxDE-i8Ys/T8SJhSgoT1I/AAAAAAAAAWo/JGtQ-7BNNuk/s1600/529670_382115418476365_275683962452845_1183759_1506935906_n.jpg

I am of course remembering Andrew Olmsted and the price he paid. May God's hand be in his, always.

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